On May 20, 1936 President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Rural Electrification Act, establishing the Rural Electrification Administration (now known as the Rural Utilities Services) as a lending agency. The Act authorized self-liquidating loans for the purpose of financing the construction and operation of generating plants, electric transmission and distribution lines or systems for the furnishing of electric energy to people in rural areas where central stations would not serve.

At the same time, the federal government was beginning to build hydroelectric projects throughout the country. Since federal law granted public preference to consumer-owned, nonprofit utilities, like electric cooperatives, they were able to make affordable, dependable power a reality in the communities of rural America.

The Washington Rural Electric Cooperative Association (WRECA) was established in 1942 to provide its members with a unified voice at the state capitol in Olympia.

Today, WRECA provides its members with a variety of services. As the unifying voice for the state’s mutual electric companies and rural electric cooperatives at the state capitol, WRECA identifies and monitors state legislative issues impacting the membership, develops strategic alliances to effectively deal with identified state issues, serves as a resource center for state issues concerning membership, and acts as the statewide liaison for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. WRECA is continually using all means possible to further their member’s interests.